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Are you an order taker or a good account manager?

Does this question make you confused or enlightened?

Understandable as an advertising agency account manager, order taking is one of our scopes. We are the people with most meetings or most phone calls in a day out of the whole office where we listen and where we response to many conversations.

But it’s more than order taking because if you are just a person who copy and paste everything you heard and you are asked, why would an account manager need anyway.

There are a lot of AI meeting note taking tools to replace the account manager. 

The key important essence of account managing in communication is just more than order taking, you need to be more proactive in everything. 

Different approaches that one ads agency account manager should always have are;

  • Proactively listening
  • Proactively thinking ahead of what you talk next
  • Proactively seeing the challenges of your client’s business or sometimes it could be your advertising agency’s challenges in providing the client as they need.

So, in summary, you will need to have that one mindset of curiosity in what you are doing with the heart of enthusiasm to figure out the best solution you can give your client as a customer success.

At some point, account managers feel like stucking in a cycle of client meetings, endless phone calls, and translating wishes into instructions for the creative team?


Ditch the Dictaphone, Embrace the Detective

Active listening? Sure, that's table stakes. But we're talking about proactive listening, where you become a detective, unearthing hidden desires and anxieties buried beneath the surface of client conversations.

Here's how you transform from passive order taker to proactive client champion:

  1. Become a Business Butterfly: Ditch the script and embrace genuine curiosity. Ask insightful questions that go beyond campaign specifics. What keeps your client up at night? What are their long-term business goals? Understanding their bigger picture allows you to tailor solutions that truly resonate.
  2. Future-proof Your Thinking: Don't wait for problems to land on your desk. Develop the ability to anticipate challenges. Is a new competitor emerging? Are there potential market shifts on the horizon? Proactive identification of hurdles allows you to develop contingency plans or even transform them into opportunities.
  3. Embrace the "Yes, And..." Mentality: Clients come to us with ideas, but those ideas aren't always fully formed. Instead of a rote "yes" or "no," cultivate a "yes, and..." approach. Build upon their initial concepts, injecting creative solutions and strategic insights. This collaborative spirit fosters trust and fuels a more impactful outcome.

The Power of Proactive Enthusiasm

But being a proactive account manager isn't just about strategy; it's about attitude. Enthusiasm is your secret weapon. Your passion for your client's success is contagious. It builds trust, fosters collaboration, and inspires the entire team to push the boundaries.

Imagine this: You Walk into a client meeting brimming with excitement, not just for the next campaign, but for the positive impact it will have on their business. You unveil a data-driven strategy that addresses their unspoken concerns and unlocks new avenues for growth.

Suddenly, you're not just the "order taker." You're the trusted advisor, the strategic superhero who has transformed their business with proactive thinking and genuine enthusiasm.

In summary, active listening is being fully engaged in the conversation with 3 aspects:

  • Cognitive
  • Emotional
  • Behavioral

Key components of active listening

  1. Focus: Give the speaker your undivided attention, both verbally and nonverbally.
  2. Confirmation: Show the speaker you're engaged through body language and verbal cues like nodding or saying "yes." or easy, it could be paraphrasing.
  3. Clarification: Paraphrase and ask questions to ensure you understand what's being said. If there is any wrong information that you had mistakenly, your client will guide and correct to digest correct information.
  4. Deferment: Avoid interrupting; let the speaker finish presenting their point.
  5. Respect: Respond with honesty and respect, even if you disagree.

Now, after reading, have your reflect yourself about how you are doing your account management daily tasks?

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